Did you know that when it comes to winter, Victoria is one of the largest consumers of natural gas? There are more than two million homes connected to the gas system within the state, with approximately 35,000 new customers each year.

On Tuesday, 8 May 2018, AEMO delivered its annual Victorian Gas Winter Outlook as part of our commitment to provide industry stakeholders with information about gas operations, planning, market considerations and emergency management for the upcoming winter.

Representatives from AEMO presented alongside WeatherZone and the Australian Pipeline Association (APA) at the Melbourne Exhibition and Convention Centre to a cohort of industry stakeholders.

The event kicked off with a review of last year’s winter gas consumption, which highlighted that 2017 saw the highest annual consumption of gas in the last six years. The second highest gas demand day in history was recorded on 3 August 2017, which also happened to be the coldest day in 2017 for Victorians.

While last year’s conditions left us on thin ice, meteorologist Josh Fisher from WeatherZone presented more favourable weather predictions for this year.

Good news for those who dislike the cold, it is expected that Australia’s South East will experience warmer than average temperatures for the 2018 June-August period, a marked difference from last year.  On the other hand, we can look forward to a winter that will be similar to that of 2016, with an increase of rainfall and sea surface temperatures, which will drive more moisture into the air.

The key learnings from the 2018 Winter Gas Outlook included a call for more gas storage in the system and greater transparency in relation to available potential supply.

Winter may be coming, but we are prepared and the snow must go on!